Every hair type comes with its own set of struggles but we’d bet curly girls spend the most time on their curly hair routines. Which makes it that much more disappointing when you wake up in the morning only to find your once bouncy, voluminous ringlets are flat and extra frizzy. If this is something you deal with on the regular, you’re likely skipping one crucial step in your nightly routine: hair wrapping.
While you may have never tried this technique before, hair wrapping has been around for years. Originating in Africa, this technique represents a long history of Black hair culture and has been used for decades by African American women to style and preserve their hair. These days, many women wrap their hair as a stylish protective option before going to bed.
Who can benefit from wrapping their hair?
The short answer: everyone! As Brown explains, wrapping your hair before bed keeps the hair cuticle closed while you toss and turn at night.
“When you don't wrap your hair, your hair is essentially rubbing up against your pillowcase while you sleep...Which can cause your cuticle to open, thus causing dryness, breakage, and damage over time,” Brown says.
While wrapping your hair is a technique long used by the curly and natural hair community to keep curls maintained and frizz-free overnight, Brown suggests that every hair type can benefit from hair wrapping in different ways.
“Higher texture types like curly, coily, and zig-zag coil hair benefit by keeping the cuticle closed as well as getting longevity in their silk press or blow out style,” Brown explains. “Lower texture types that are prone to frizz, or have pre-lightened, chemically treated hair benefit from wrapping as well.”
Brown adds that those with low texture types such as straight, wavy, or loose curls that experience challenges with maintaining length, have a better chance of growing down-to-there-hair if they wrap their hair consistently.
“I strongly urge my clients to wrap their hair as soon as they get home from work at night. I tell them to get home, wash off their makeup, and wrap their hair. This will begin to create a great routine for skin care and hair care alike,” Brown says.
How To Do A Hair Wrap
Before you begin wrapping, it’s essential to prep your mane with hydrating products. According to Brown, the product you use pre-wrapping should be determined by your hair texture as well as the needs of your hair.
“Prep your hair by applying product to the mid-shaft and ends of the hair...never to the roots as this will create oily looking hair,” Brown says.
If your mane is on the drier side and you need a formula that’s lightweight, opt for Mizani 25 Miracle Nourishing Oil. This luxurious hair treatment offers 25 benefits for hair, including moisturizing, detangling, softening, and revitalizing curls. If you have thick, dry hair, use Mizani Coconut Souffle Hair Moisturizer or Mizani Thermasmooth Smoothguard Serum.
How To Wrap Short Hair
If your mane is shorter than shoulder length, Brown recommends a classic wrapping technique using a silk hair scarf. For this technique, you’ll need to have the hair scarf of your choice and a few hair clips with no grips on the inside. Use a boar bristle brush to brush your hair in the opposite direction of your part and wrap it around your head.
“You brush the hair around your head, essentially using your head as a large roller to keep the volume while you sleep,” Brown says.
Use non-grip hair clips to pin your hair around your head until you reach your ends.
“As you are wrapping, you can secure with non-grip clips before putting your silk scarf over the hair...Once the silk scarf is on, you can then carefully slide the clips out,” Brown says.
Once all of your hair is secured with clips, fold your scarf into a triangle and wrap it around your head. Secure your scarf and gently remove all of the hair clips. In the morning, untie the hair scarf and gently comb your hair back to where you normally part it.
How To Wrap Long Hair
If you have longer hair, opt for the scrunchie technique. Flip your head over and brush through your hair with a boar bristle brush to the front of your head. If you have tighter coils, you might want to skip this step so as not to ruin your curl pattern. Grab all of your hair as if you were creating a ponytail. Then, twist all of the hair from the ponytail and wrap it around the base of your ponytail to form a bun, as close to the front of your hairline as possible so that your scarf will stay on. Loosely secure the bun with a scrunchie.
“The bun must be secured with something soft like a scrunchie, so ensure no marks or lines are created,” Brown explains. “The bun must not be too tight...when you wrap your silk scarf on it, this is what will secure the bun and make sure it stays intact through the night.”
Then, fold your scarf into a triangle and secure it around your head. Use the loose corners of the triangle to tie the scarf in place at the back of your head.
When it’s time to remove your scarf, gently pull it off from the back of your head and shake your hair to remove the scrunchie easily without tugging on your strands.